We dispatched Brad Murano, otherwise known as The Brad as in The Brad’s Adventures in Food, to the Food & Wine Classic in Aspen this weekend. He files a photo essay of the glamorous event.
The Food & Wine Classic in Aspen isn’t just about the chef demonstrations, informative seminars, and massive Grand Tastings, it’s about parties. Press, trade, chefs, attendees and fence-jumpers jocky for placements on the coveted lists. Here are some snaps from various F&W shenanigans and some famous peeps from Dallas with famous peeps from around the world.3 Comments »
The headline says all I know about this. I swiped the photo from Chef Davaillon’s Facebook page. Shall we count the minutes until The Brad pipes up? Go.
Last night’s 100 Best Restaurants party couldn’t have been more perfect. So many underrated restaurants (like Mr. Wok Asian Bistro in Plano) came out of their ‘burby shells and celebrated the release of our June issue, 100 Best Restaurants in Dallas, with us. It’s on newsstands today. Go get yourself a copy.
A huge shout-out to See’s Candies for providing an entire table of candies and chocolates. People kept going over there, like ants attracted to honey. A feast raged inside 3015 at Trinity Groves, where places like Pecan Lodge served barbecue brisket two tables down from Tei-An’s refreshing seaweed salad. All the big heavy hitters were there: John Tesar; Jack Perkins; Nick Badovinus; and Oak’s owners, Richard and Tiffanee Ellman (just to name a few). Some of them even pied Nancy.
Nancy showed up around 7 in her pigtails and pigalicious costume, looking every bit the weirdo that she is. She had the snout, the goggles, the everything. I need/want/have to wear that suit for Halloween. Mark Brezinski of Velvet Taco was about to throw the first pie at Nancy when Tesar cut in and smacked her a good one. I think he bought 12 pies in total (but he only threw four, maybe?) and at one point even said, “I would’ve paid $40 if it’d been Brenner. Joking!”7 Comments »
This weekend was ideal for country music and spirits lovers as the Kenny Chesney 2013 No Shoes Nation concert Saturday night also featured the launch of his new rum inspired by sitting in the sunshine in the Caribbean islands sipping rum without anywhere to go or anything to do. After much thought and research he finally settled on creating his Blue Chair Bay Rum at a small distillery in Barbados just a few feet away from the beach, partnering with Savvy Drinks to create his lifestyle of the islands in a bottle.
Having spent a little time in the Caribbean, I can easily understand how the lifestyle of living on a white sandy beach, listening to music, sipping clean island rum and doing nothing is infectious, if you can bottle that I am immediately there! And he did. The White Rum, Coconut Rum and Coconut Spiced Rum are all true to their island inspired name, filled with sweet vanilla, tropical fruit and spice. I was unable to attend the launch but had a chance to try a sample of all three and a few cocktails, given to me by the producers, before the event. I particularly liked the coconut spiced rum filled with a luscious combination of toasted coconut, warm baking spices like cinnamon and cloves and sweet vanilla. Delicate and smooth, ideal for sipping on their own or mixing into your favorite cocktail. I liked it just mixed with club soda and a sprig of fresh mint.
The product is just now launching and will be available throughout Dallas shortly, each retailing for less than $20 a bottle. Follow the jump for recipes. Continue reading "What To Drink Now: Blue Chair Bay Rum with Kenny Chesney"3 Comments »
Ever wondered where the former First Lady dines in Dallas? Apparently, it’s Cane Rosso. A friend of mine spotted her there this past Saturday afternoon. There was no doubt, he said. That perfectly coifed hair could belong to none other than Laura Bush. As the taco festivities raged in Deep Ellum this weekend, the former First Lady sat inside Cane Rosso, munching on pizza. According to Jay Jerrier, Mrs. Bush, who “was super nice,” ordered the Mista, Gus, Funghi, and Zeppole pizzas. Wicked cool.
[Correction: Jay Jerrier says it's "2 pizzas. Mista is a salad & Zeppole is dessert. 4 people. Super super nice too."]8 Comments »
BRAVOlebrity Curtis Stone (Aussie hunk and chef/author) is hanging out on the set of D: The Broadcast this morning, so be sure to tune in from 9 to 11 a.m.
Not gonna lie, I’m kind of in love with Stone’s Backstreet Boy hair, and I can’t decide which looks more yummy: the spinach and arugula salad he’s making or that mega watt smile.
Brush up on your Stone history and knowledge with this interview by intern Sheila Dang.
Every year, the football field-turned-We Over Me Farm at Paul Quinn College puts on a fundraiser that I mark into my calendar with a bright pink highlighter. Not even two free tickets to the Dallas Symphony’s April 11 concert (featuring Liszt’s Piano Concerto No. 2, by the way) can sway me from my commitment to attend “A Community Cooks” on Thursday at 6 p.m. Here’s why:
I love farm manager Andrea Bithell, and the work study students who work side-by-side in the fields with her do too. Spend five minutes with her, and you can see that she genuinely cares about the community and her kids.
There will be peacocks. The Greenhill School of Addison recently donated Bonnie and Capone, a 6-month-old brother and sister pair, to Paul Quinn College Farm. They act as security guards to keep snakes and other pests away from the produce that’s growing. Apparently, the peacocks are also befriending the farm’s resident chickens: Dizzy, Lady Bird, and Irva.
The food is killer. Eddie “Lucky” Campbell is shaking up some fun cocktails, while a sexy lineup of Dallas’ best chefs are gathering on the field to cook their signature recipes with locally grown ingredients. (Participating chefs include: Randall Copeland, AVA; Garreth Dickey, DISH Restaurant & Lounge; Graham Dodds, Central 214; Jason Ferraro, Hibiscus; Jeff Harris, Bolsa; Chad Houser, Café Momentum; Orazio LaManna, Legends Hospitality/Dallas Cowboys Stadium; Dan Landsberg, Dragonfly; Brian Luscher, The Grape; Jason Maddy, Oak; Matt McCallister, FT33; Janice Provost, Parigi; Anastacia Quiñones, Komali; Jim Severson, Sevy’s; Nathan Tate, Boulevardier; Sharon Van Meter, 3015 at Trinity Groves; and Mark Wootton, Garden Café.)
Never, ever, ever underestimate the celebrity power of Dean Fearing. Our Dallas homeboy knows, like, everyone. And he’s bringing his buddies, John Folse and James Beard Award-winning Rick Tramonto to Dallas for a little Louisiana creole night on Thursday, March 28, at Fearing’s restaurant. (Reception at 6:30 p.m. Dinner at 7 p.m.) So the price isn’t cheap ($155 per person, add $50 if you desire wine pairings), but it should be worth selling your left arm. No, really.
The press release states that “Lousiana’s John Folse founded Lafitte’s Landing Restaurant in 1978, bringing “a taste of Louisiana” to the world and later bringing it to the 1988 Presidential Summit between Ronald Reagan and Mikhail Gorbachev. In 1989, Folse became the first non-Italian chef to create the Vatican State Dinner in Rome, prompting the Louisiana Legislature to name him “Louisiana’s Culinary Ambassador to the World.”
For one night, you can pretend to be a world leader dining on world-class food.
To reserve, call Kelsey Holmes at 214-922-4817
If the novelty of your gym membership has worn off, you’ll be looking for new ways to keep up with your get-fit New Year’s resolution—as many of us are. Luckily for you, there’s plenty of small things you can do with your diet to make a difference without giving up the good stuff altogether. Son-of-a-superstar-chef and growing legend himself, Bobby Deen will be in Dallas tomorrow, February 8, to sign his new cookbook, From Mama’s Table to Mine, at Barnes and Noble (7700 W. Northwest Highway).
There’s definitely nothing about this book that screams diet, but if you take a look at most of the recipes, each one has been modified from one of his mother’s originals. Most of the dishes cut a couple hundred calories off each plate. I was lucky enough to talk to him about his book before he gets here.
Aimee Pass: What’s your trick to making healthy food taste good?
Bobby Deen: What I do is a lot of shuffling around. I find the major culprit in recipes—find what contains the most fat and calories—and find a way to cut it back, which is really simple, or replace it with fresh spices or with vegetables. Things that are flavorful, but not necessarily fattening.
My fondest memory of SMU-trained pianist Alessio Bax takes me all the way back to high school. I was fifteen or sixteen, and playing violin in the Greater Dallas Youth Orchestra. Right before one of our concerts at the Meyerson, the piano soloist had a family emergency and suddenly dropped out. We were pretty much screwed. Rhapsody in Blue without a pianist? George Gershwin would probably turn over in his grave. But then Alessio Bax came in and saved the day. He was stage-ready after only rehearsing with us once. It was brilliant! I remember thinking, “Wow, this guy is amazing, and he looks like Ewan McGregor.”
According to yesterday’s NYT Diner’s Journal, SMU-trained pianist Alessio Bax is also a fancy schmancy eater. Bax, at 35, is called “a rising star in classical music” by Jeff Gordinier, but – take it from me – he’s already a star. Born and raised in Italy, Bax moved to Dallas in 1994 and studied at SMU. He’s now part of the faculty there.
Here’s a snippet of his interview with the New York Times:
On an Apulian dish he longs for “Fave e cicoria. It’s fava beans, puréed, with bitter greens. We make that here at home. That one really brings me back to my childhood. Not only eating it, but just the smell of the fava boiling.”
On his bottomless stomach “When my mother was feeding me as a kid, she had to use two spoons. Because by the time she would put a spoon down, I would start crying for more food. I’ve been told that I used to open the oven and get food from the oven. And that was very dangerous.”
On a meal he can’t forget “If I have to single out a really memorable experience, it was probably a Kyoto-style meal in Japan — two of them, actually, in Tokyo. It was fantastic. What I liked was that it was about subtlety. It was all about matsutake mushrooms. They were in season. The first thing I could think about is music, where you really have to go deep inside it to know it.”
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I’ve known Wick Allison, the editor in chief and owner of D Magazine, since 1974AD. He’s an intelligent man in so many ways. However he doesn’t know bupkis about bagels, baba ganoush, or Bordeaux. He is a culinary ignoramus. Wick’s idea of a perfect meal is a tuna sandwich with extra mayonnaise on toast, served with fries. No wonder he’s been satisfied with my food writing for 16 years. It’s the only section in the magazine that is over his head.
Yesterday I wrote a post urging you to help me get SideDish on TV. We (I) have a great opportunity to create as many food-related shows on KTXD — soon to be D-TV – as we (I) can get developed. However, Wick claims he’s not interested and because he isn’t interested, you aren’t. I sent him a link to my post. He didn’t reply directly but he told his assistant to tell me that he “isn’t a foodie” and doesn’t know the first thing about “foodie talent.”
How could such a entrepreneurial thinker be so brainless about food programming? Food Channel? Food Network? Bobby Flay Eats Dry Toast? Wick would never miss a chance to cash in.
Suspicious, I snuck into Wick’s office last night to search for ammunition. And there between the version of The Bible he edited and the current issue of The American Conservative, I uncovered the mother lode. Tuna sandwich and fries, my sass. Wick is a freakin’ closet foodie, and I found the pictures to prove it. He travels the world and eats and drinks with all of the major players.
What do you say now, Wickster? Fried shrimp with Paula Deen and the Pope? Barbecued ribs with Ronald Reagan and Padma? How long before I find more evidence of your secret epicurean adventures? Give SideDish a show, or I’ll give you one you’ll never live down.6 Comments »
Yes, it’s true. George Clooney was floating around downtown’s Iron Cactus yesterday evening, promoting a new tequila brand called Casamigos with his buddy, Rande Gerber, a former model. Iron Cactus, why didn’t you tell Nancy that Clooney was there? You know how much she love, love, loves him. Were you afraid she’d steal him and all the tequila? That’s probably what would’ve happened if you did. Thanks for denying us the probability of a very good show, worthy of reality TV. You suck.
Tyler Florence, in all his culinary glory, will be at NorthPark’s Williams-Sonoma at noon on December 10 to sign copies of his new book, Fresh, which he says reflects where he is as a person right now. I’m predicting one heck of a line.
You probably know him from his 16 years on the Food Network, or from his seven bestselling cookbooks (this is his ninth book, after his children’s book series). He also has three California restaurants, a line of organic baby food, and a line of wines with Mondavi. Yesterday, I was lucky enough to ask this pro a few questions. Good thing this was a phone interview, so he couldn’t see how much I was geeking out.
SB: I just got my copy of the book last night and immediately started flipping through it. How did this project get started?
TF: To me, the idea of doing something very pure felt appealing this time around. It’s incredibly stripped down – we wanted to branch out and do something different that felt fresh. The first thing I do is lock myself in my office and start writing flavor profiles – make a list, brainstorm stuff, and clarify the concept. Then the recipes are tested. When I’m cooking, I can adjust things easily, but that’s not necessarily true for people at home. They take the recipe as a Bible. Testers give feedback, and we make edits at that point. The content has to be perfect.
SB: Your book is all about the need to get back to fresh ingredients because the American diet is overwhelmed with processed foods. Do you think this issue has become more serious lately?1 Comment »
On Friday night, Anthony Bourdain’s fans packed the seats inside Fort Worth’s Bass Hall to hear the crass No Reservations host bash Food Network stars and do his usual shtick. Except this time, Bourdain brought his bestie, Eric Ripert, along for the ride. He and the Le Bernardin chef ripped each other to shreds. It was a sight to behold. For the first hour, the friends took turns sitting under a single hanging lamp while one of them interrogated the other. Honest to turkeys, both of them would make awful policemen. They’re not intimidating enough.
Cutie pie Eric Ripert was giggling for the first 15 minutes or so, right until Bourdain started going after him. The Buddhism-practicing Frenchmen flicked Bourdain off with both hands once Bourdain jumped into a story of Ripert punching a rude dude defending his witchy wife in the face. This is a lesson to all: don’t mess with chefs. They have a mean right hook.
When it was Bourdain’s turn to sit in the hotseat, Ripert was a little more forgiving with his questions.6 Comments »
Tomorrow, master restaurateur, Joe Bastianich will be holding a casting call to see if anyone in Dallas has what it takes to be a master chef. Co-host of Fox’s hit series, MasterChef, Bastianich has been dubbed the “Simon Cowell of the Food Industry” so aspiring master chefs might want to bring their A-game and some thick skin.
When I spoke with him yesterday he said that he expects great things from Dallas. “Our last winner was from Texas and we, generally, always get great results from Texas,” he said. I was surprised to learn that MasterChef is not about who has the best culinary background or technique. Bastianich expressed that the show is about good food and chefs that love what they do.
With that said, I’m officially calling out all chefs of the DFW area to come out tomorrow from 10 a.m-6 p.m. to Le Cordon Blue at 11830 Webb Chapel Road Dallas, TX 75234. Who knows? You just may walk away with a spot on Season Four of MasterChef to compete for $250,000 and a cookbook deal. Sounds pretty delicious if you ask me.
Tiffany Thomas is a 22-year-old from Shreveport. She graduated from Northwestern State University of Louisiana in Natchitoches, LA. She enjoys writing, cooking, shopping, and eating.
Nancy and I were on a national conference call with Anthony Bourdain yesterday set up by the Travel Channel. Other major media outlets (hey, Eater Dallas!) were there taking turns, asking him goodness knows how many questions. The poor man. But I guess he gets paid big bucks for this, so my pity is short-lasting. Before I pelted Bourdain with random questions that SideDish readers submitted, Bourdain shared his thoughts on new chefs that he admires, like “the guys at Mission Chinese in NY and San Francisco who are doing amazing work. Second generations of Chinese and Korean kids who don’t really feel any particular geographic connection or responsibility to stay authentic are going to be really, really interesting.” He talked to Rebecca from AAA World Magazine about why he hasn’t filmed in Philadelphia for awhile, and then basically admitted to Eater Dallas editor Whitney Filloon that he hasn’t really eaten anywhere in Dallas.
Uncle Nancy followed up after Eater Dallas with a bang. “Then you’re shamefully ignorant of Dallas food?”
Anthony Bourdain: Yeah, yeah. I think that’s a fair statement.7 Comments »
The State Fair of Texas may be over, but that doesn’t mean we’ve seen the last of it.
Even though he’s said that he’s “quite done with food challenges,” Adam Richman can’t seem to separate himself from food. The host of the cult classic, Man vs. Food on the Travel Channel, was at the State Fair on Saturday, where he teamed up with Bounty Paper Towels and Napkins to discover the tastiest messes in Texas.
Five dishes and six judges (including Richman) engaged a throng of fans in the greasiest and most deep fried of taste tests.
Bounty paper towels were also on deck to soak up the Texas-sized messes.
In case you’ve been living in a cave, I just wanted to reiterate that Bobby Flay and Paula Deen were in Dallas over the weekend for the Metropolitan Cooking and Entertaining Show. Bflay – the Food Network star of countless TV shows (some hot, some not) – rocked my Saturday morning in the Celebrity Theater by doing what he does best: grill the heck out of meat. He decided to do a thick ribeye steak and make a Southwestern potato salad since he was in the company of Dallas people. Nobody complained. In fact, everyone loved him. So, despite rumors that Mr. Flay, in real life, is a bit of a jack… o’ lantern, he managed to woo Dallas and make everyone in the audience (even the skeptic food bloggers I sat next to) drink the Flay Kool Aid.
Big fans of Bobby probably already know this information I’m about to reveal to you. If you stalk him, these details won’t come as a surprise. If you don’t, then enjoy these five little tidbits about Bflay, the red-headed chef.5 Comments »
Oh my, my, my. Food Network stars Bobby Flay and Paula Deen will be in town on the weekend of September 22-23. It doesn’t matter if you love them or hate ‘em to shreds, these two will be doing cooking demonstrations, signing cookbooks, and walking around the Dallas Convention Center at the inaugural Metropolitan Cooking & Entertaining Show. It’s the first time Dallas is hosting this big event, which usually takes place in D.C. or Houston. Other Dallas James Beard-affiliated chefs Bruno Davaillon, Stephan Pyles, Tre Wilcox, Abraham Salum, Adam West, and Richard Chamberlain ) will also be on the cooking stage for a jam-packed event filled with tastings, workshops, exhibitions, and celebrity appearances.
General admission tickets are $24.50, and kids ages 4-12 are $12.50. Children ages 4 and younger can get in free. If you’re dying to see Paula or Bobby, you’ll need a special ticket for that VIP meet-and-greet event. For ticket prices and more info, go here.1 Comment »